Wednesday, 25 July 2007

The Art of Negotiation: By Donald J Trump

Thought since I have included some takeover talks and share talks that it is important to include the art of negotiation when it comes down to takeovers as shared by the master himself, Mr Donald J Trump.

Power is the ability to convince people to accept your ideas. Negotiation is a form of convincing. Power is ability. Ability is the result of practice and application. Think about these things carefully and let them sink in. After you have, remember this one: If you have them by the balls, their hearts and minds will follow. Sound tough? That’s right--that’s how negotiating to win can be. But as an art, there are nuances and finely honed techniques and rules to be aware of. Here are a few of them:

1. Know what you’re doing. Sounds simple, but I’ve seen a lot of instances where I couldn’t believe how much the other side didn’t know. I immediately knew I could have a grand slam and fast, just based on their apparent lack of preparation. My father used to tell me, “Know everything you can about what you’re doing.” He was absolutely right, and I’m giving you the same advice. Follow it.

2. He who has the gold, makes the rules. Another tough one, but that’s life. You’ve got to know who has the upper hand and proceed accordingly. Power is not just about calling all the shots, it’s about ability. Sometimes ability is having the discernment to see into a situation and realizing the power isn’t all yours. Know where the other side is coming from--do your homework thoroughly and carefully.

3. It takes a lot of smarts to play dumb. This is a good way to see how much your negotiating partners don’t know. It’s also a good way to see if they are bulldozing you.

4. Never let anyone know exactly where you’re coming from. Keep them a bit off balance. What they don’t know won’t hurt you, and that may help you down the line. Knowledge is power, so keep as much of it to yourself as possible.

5. Trust your instincts. There are a lot of situations that will not be black and white in negotiating, so go with your gut. Combine this with your homework and you’ll be ahead of the game.

6. Don’t be confined by expectations. There are no exact rules, and sometimes I’ve changed course in the middle of negotiations when something new has occurred to me. Remain flexible and open to new ideas, even when you think you know exactly what you want. This attitude has provided me with opportunities that I would not have thought about before.

7. Know your limitations, and know when to say no. This has become instinct for me by now, but I think we all know when that buzzer goes off inside. Pay attention to that signal.

8. Be patient. I’ve waited for some deals for decades, and it was worth the wait. But make sure what you’re waiting for is worth it to begin with. To speed up negotiations, be indifferent. That way you’ll find out if the other side is eager to proceed.

No comments: